Contextual information design | Hewlett Packard Labs

Goal: Contextual information design: proof of concept prototype for gesture-based interactions in public spaces
Project: Research Internship at Hewlett Packard Labs
Duration: 12 Weeks

Team Size: Three
Role: User research, Concepts & Ideation, Prototyping, Visual Design
Tools: Kinect, TouchDesigner, Python, Adobe Illustrator, Google Sketchup

Outcome/ Further Progress: Confidential

I worked at Hewlett Packard Labs in Palo Alto, CA as research intern during summer 2016. We (team of 3) worked on research, ideation, and execution of proof-of-concept project that presents contextual information in public places. Respecting confidentiality, this page shows only a slice of project that I can share publicly.


We simulated a scenario of an airport corridor with networked sensors and displays that read user parameters such as location, face orientation, digital boarding pass etc. and present specific and relevant information to that user. In this scenario the most relevant information is the flight details, such as navigation to appropriate departure gate, boarding updates, and the time it would take for the user to walk from current location to the gate.

The space was transformed from an ordinary corridor to the simulation with a number of networked sensors, projectors, and HD LED displays.



Following is an example of one of the interactions offered by the system, where upon looking at the screen, the user’s flight is highlighted from the list of all other departing flights:


Along with primary relevant information (list and map views), a few microinteractions were added to the experience to make it more delightful, such as this continuous parallax effect when user moves in the 40 feet long corridor:

The system consists of multiple modules of networked kinects and mini desktops that gather user parameters in front of individual screens. The bits of inputs are stitched and processed by a central workstation that anticipates user’s actions with respect to the whole space, to generate information on corresponding local machines.